Best Gear of the Year 2011

We combed through more than 350 reviews to pick out the most innovative and smartly designed devices of the year. The result is 9 laptops, 7 smartphones, 5 tablets, and 5 accessories—all of which bring a special combination of design, performance, value, and advanced features to their category. From a smartphone that speaks back to you to a $199 Android tablet with direct access to Amazon’s content to the ultimate ultraportable notebook, these are the gadgets that have battled and won their place as kings of the hill in 2011.

  • The Best Laptops
    Our top notebooks of the year include an ultralight machine that wakes from sleep in an instant, the most powerful gaming rig on earth, and a multimedia powerhouse with amazing audio.
  • The Best Smartphones
    Smartphone tech evolved to new heights this year, thanks to dual-core processors, full HD displays, and lightning fast 4G LTE data speeds–not to mention much smarter software.
  • The Best Tablets
    The iPad 2 forced Android tablet makers to step up their game this year. The $199 Kindle Fire and the keyboard-ready ASUS Transformer Prime were among our top picks.
  • The Best Accessories
    What do a USB-powered external monitor, a Verizon LTE hotspot, a touch-sensitive mouse, a Samsung wireless display, and a universal remote control app have in common? They all made our top accessories list. 
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